Shembe leader: faction behind assassination bid

2011-08-08 00:00

A LEADER in the Nazareth Baptist Church, also known as the Shembe Church, who survived an alleged assassination attempt, believes the attack arose from the decades-old internal conflict within the church.

Edward Ximba, general secretary of the eKuphakameni faction led by Inkosi Vukile Shembe, said he came under heavy gunfire near a shopping centre in Inanda, outside Durban, about a week ago.

“I was driving from home after dropping my kids at home in the Inanda area when I came under the gunfire. I managed to drive away and was unscathed, but my car was riddled with bullets all over,” Ximba said.

The Shembe church was previously divided into three factions, eKuphakameni, Ginyezinye under Sizwe Shembe, and the largest eBuhleni. eKuphakameni and Ginyezinye have since united.

Ximba said it is the first time he has been attacked, but that he had been receiving threats since his appointment at eKuphakameni about 14 years ago. He believes he was “being followed and under surveillance from certain rivals within the church”.

Providing a case number, Ximba said he opened an attempted murder case at Inanda police station. Police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Vincent Mdunge could not confirm a case was reported.

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